Taranaki Daily News 1 Dec 2011
A Hawera police sergeant has earned praise for the common sense way she has dealt with young offenders. In a method reminiscent of the good old days of community policing, Sergeant Sandy Shaw made two boys clean up their graffiti and say sorry. The boys found themselves in trouble with the law this week when they were caught tagging the King Edward Park playground and scaring elderly residents by throwing stones at their houses. Their punishment was dished out by Ms Shaw, who marched the pair into the Hawera office of the Taranaki Daily News. The sorry-looking duo stood in silent horror as Ms Shaw explained what they had done. Earlier in the day she had watched over the pair as they scrubbed their lewd comments off the popular family attraction. The 12- and 13-year-old then washed a couple of police cars for good measure. The pair handed letters of apology to the Daily News and swore to never do it again. “I hope you guys can forgive me for what I have done,” one boy wrote. Ms Shaw said she did not want the boys identified but they needed to understand what effect their mindless actions had on the community. Yesterday National MP Chester Borrows, a former policeman, pulled no punches in his support for her actions. “Our communities won’t put up with the sort of crap happening in our neighbourhoods and over the years we’ve got too politically correct about how we deal with these types of things,” he said.